When you’re scrapping away for survival at the wrong end of the table, every point is such a prisoner, they just about come with an armed guard. Hamilton’s defending was certainly criminal for the first half goal they conceded in this feisty Lanarkshire derby. Liam Grimshaw’s mistake which set up the home side’s equaliser for Marios Ogkmpoe with six minutes left, meanwhile, almost attracted the attentions of Police Scotland.

In the end, Hamilton’s robust rally in the second period deservedly got them something from a keenly contested tussle although they were perhaps fortunate to keep a full compliment of players on the park after one or two meaty tackles. With St Mirren, who currently occupy the relegation play-off spot, winning at Livingston to get to within two points of the Accies, it’s going to be a nail-nibbling ended to the campaign.

“I was praying for half-time so I could regroup,” admitted the Hamilton manager Brian Rice after Motherwell’s period of dominance. “I changed the formation and the second half I couldn't have asked for any more.”

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Rice lavished particular praise on Ogkmpoe, who continued his recovery from a career-threatening injury by emerging from the bench to plunder the equaliser. “I found him a wee bit slack when I came in but I had a good chat with him most days and I told him his best mate is hard work,” said Rice. “Every time I see him in the morning I say, ‘who's your best mate?' and he says 'hard work, gaffer'. I’m absolutely delighted for the big boy because he has had a bad injury.”

As that big fiery orb in the sky shone, Motherwell had a good chance to make hay within five minutes but having eased in on goal, James Scott’s shot was well saved by Gary Woods. At the other end, meanwhile, David McMillan took it upon himself to try and forge something for the hosts. He had a couple of long range efforts in quick succession which Mark Gillespie had to deal with before screwing other shooting opportunity wide of the target when it may have been better slipping in Dougie Imrie who was lurking unmarked to his left. Imrie’s cursing response suggested McMillan should have opted for the latter option.

There were a few profane expressions of relief just two minutes later from those of an Accies persuasion, though, when Tom Aldred clattered a header against the bar from a few yards and the bobbling remnants landed in the grateful clutches of Woods. It was only a temporary reprieve, however. A couple of minutes after that let off, Motherwell capitalised on a flimsy Hamilton defence that wouldn’t have held up in court. Grimshaw flung a cross in from the right and David Turnbull mosied in unhindered to cushion the ball home.

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After the proverbial boot where the sun certainly wasn’t shining from Rice at half-time, Hamilton appeared with much more gusto for the resumption. Aaron McGowan wasted a good chance when he sliced wide from the edge of the box while Ogkmpoe fluffed a header at the back post. In between that, Chris Cadden had clipped the bar with a cross but Hamilton were rewarded for their spirit whem Grimshaw got himself in a fankle and Ogkmpoe stole in and finished with great confidence and authority.

“We’re disappointed to come away with a point after we dominated the first half,” conceded the Motherwell manager, Stephen Robinson. “We had chances to finish them off and didn’t take them and, when that happens, you give people a lifeline, albeit they scored from an individual error. But it shows you how far we’ve come that we’re disappointed to draw away from home against a team that’s fighting for their lives.”